Featured Celebrity Chef
Friday, May 15th 2015 | 7 PM
As a prominent figure in the culinary community, Cat Cora made television history in 2005 when she became the first female Iron Chef on Food Network’s Iron Chef America. Since then, Cora has continued to evolve her craft to become an accomplished author, restaurateur, contributing editor, avid philanthropist and television host.
As a successful restaurateur, Cora recently joined RWS Resorts to launch Ocean by Cat Cora on Sentosa Island in Singapore. Prior to this, Cora opened Cat Cora’s Que situated in South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa, California as well Cat Cora’s Kitchen with three locations including San Francisco International Airport, George Bush International Airport and Salt Lake City International Airport which is also home to Cat Cora’s Kitchen Gourmet Market. A fourth Cat Cora’s Kitchen location is slated to open in early 2015 in the Atlanta airport. The acclaimed chef collaborated with Disney to create, Kouzzina by Cat Cora, a Mediterranean restaurant located at Disneyworld Boardwalk in Orlando, Florida.
Cora became the first female chef to be inducted into the American Academy of Chefs® Culinary Hall of Fame in 2012. Following this, Cora partnered with MOZO Shoes to reveal her first signature shoe line in January of 2013.
Cora has two thriving food lines, “Cat Cora’s Kitchen” which features preservative-free all natural products from Greece and healthy Mediterranean breads and spreads. In addition, she also has a merchandise line called “Cat Cora by Starfrit.”
On-screen, Cora has hosted, guest judged and appeared as herself in a number of hit food shows across television. Some of these shows include Food Network’s America’s Best Cook; Melting Pot; Kitchen Accomplished; My Country, My Kitchen: Greece; Date Plates; NBC’s Celebrity Cooking Showdown; Bravo’s Around the World in 80 Plates as well as multiple Disney webisodes.
Beyond television, Cora is also a published author with three successful cookbooks and one children’s book to her name. Additionally, in 2004, Cora founded Chefs for Humanity, a non-profit organization dedicated to reducing hunger worldwide by supporting humanitarian relief and promoting nutrition education.
Cora grew up in an intimate Greek community in Jackson, Mississippi, where she developed a passion for the culinary arts while watching her family and relatives infuse Southern spices with Mediterranean delicacies. As a young adult, she left Mississippi for New York to study at the Culinary Institute of America. Cora then continued her culinary education in Europe, completing apprenticeships for two of France’s renowned three-star Michelin chefs. She eventually returned to New York before travelling west to Napa Valley, California.
She currently resides in the Santa Barbara, California area with her family.